Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off. (Acts 13:1–3)
One of the main reasons we gather to worship on Sundays is to take our eyes off of ourselves so that we can look instead to the person of Christ. All week long, we’ve not been able to see past ourselves; we’re totally preoccupied with our own problems, set-backs, and felt-needs. We’ve lost sight of what’s ultimate. But when we walk into the worship gathering, God’s Word calls us to set our sights higher: “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Col. 3:1–3)
Something happens to us when we look to Jesus. We don’t merely look to Him to have some sort of sensational experience that gives us goosebumps. The goal of gathered worship is not to provide a spiritual pick-me-up that makes us feel better about life. Instead its greater aim is to form us by God’s Word, renew us by God’s presence, and compel us by His love, so that we can be sent into the world to live as His people (2 Cor. 5:14). Worshiping God in Christ together has a way of putting us back in touch with who we really are, what we are called to do, and the power by which we are able to do it. After all, we follow the One who said, “Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest” (John 4:35). When we look to Him, we can’t help but see the world’s need for a Savior. He will make sure of it.
This was certainly the case among the fellowship of Christ-followers in first-century Antioch. In Acts 13, we see them taking time to look to Jesus—worshiping, praying, and fasting together. Before long, it became clear that God was calling them to send Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey. As we gather this Sunday to worship God, He is more than willing to provide that same kind of clarity for us. For some, He will clarify the call to cross the globe and share Christ with the nations. For others, He will clarify the call to cross the street and share Christ with a neighbor. Either way, we must come to church ready to hear His call and respond with daring obedience. For that to happen, we must be sure to fix our eyes on Christ above all else.
More Jesus among LifePoint means More Jesus in the world. That’s why we gather.
PRAYER AND REFLECTION
- When did you last take time to truly look to Jesus? How did it impact you? Are you looking to Him today? What might He be calling you to do? Pray and ask Him to help you see things clearly.
- Pray that LifePoint’s gathered worship would be used by God to make a real impact in the world. Pray that there would be More Jesus among us.
Setlist for Sunday, January 19, 2020
- Call Upon the Lord
- Great Are You Lord
- You Never Change
- Kingdom Come (Lift Up Your Heads)
- World Needs Jesus